Using dry erase boards is a great way to save paper and motivate kids. They sure do love writing on those boards. But managing them can be tricky.
Today I am going to share some tips and ideas for organizing and managing dry erase boards and the related materials in your classroom.
Basically each student will need three things: a board, a marker and an eraser. You may find it works best to keep all three of these things contained in packets for the kids to grab and use as needed. A gallon-sized bag works well for this purpose.
If you number your students consider also numbering a board, a marker and a bag. This increased level of ownership and responsibility will greatly decrease the mistreating of the boards and will preserve the life of the markers. I also find that limiting community supplies keeps your students healthier.
Use dark colored cloths as erasers. I recommend fabric over wipes and tissues because they are more environmentally friendly and also it makes for better classroom management as you can keep everything together as a kit. Using a dark color prevents them from looking really gross after just a few uses.
Some teachers suggest using socks because the students can leave them on the hand they don’t write with and easily erase as they work. Cutting up old shirts or towels works well too. If doing the latter I recommend using pinking sheers as they will cut the fabric neatly and limit fraying.
Ask a parent volunteer to launder them for you every few weeks. Just send them home with a student on a Friday afternoon and ask that they be returned on a Monday morning.
Really Good Stuff sells a storage center that can be used to house boards, markers and erasers. You can get the same effect by turning a magazine holder on it’s side and placing baskets on top. If you are doing this I would suggest using a metal or wooden magazine holder and not a cardboard one as it will be much sturdier.
If you use dry erase boards in a small group setting often, you will find it useful to create a basket of boards, markers and wipes specifically for this purpose. It will save you time to have everything at the ready when instructing your group.
If you do not have a set of dry erase boards you can use plastic plates or page protectors. I especially like the plates or even small trays from the Dollar Store.
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